The Video Vacuum (thevideovacuum) wrote,
The Video Vacuum
thevideovacuum

MIDNIGHT MANHUNT (1945) **

A big time gangster is wanted dead or alive for a $5000 reward. A night watchman at a wax museum finds his body, and before he can call the cops, it disappears. Pretty soon, two rival reporters are on the case looking for the elusive stiff, who keeps mysteriously disappearing and reappearing at the most inopportune times. There’s also a plot about some missing diamonds that further complicates matters.

Leo Gorcery, in a rare non-Bowery Boys role, co-stars as a worker in a wax museum. Even though Gorcery isn’t playing a Bowery Boy, he’s still basically doing the same old shtick. He’s pretty funny too and his performance is easily the best thing about the movie.

George Zucco is also on hand as the murderer. He plays a good heavy and lends the film a little gravitas. The wax museum set also gives the flick a little bit of atmosphere as well.

However, much of Midnight Manhunt is routine at best. It’s not very funny (save for some of Gorcey’s one-liners) and even though the running time is barely an hour, it feels much longer. All the banter between the competing reporters is fairly tepid, and you can’t help but think how much better it all would’ve been if Gorcey had been the star instead of them. The finale is a letdown and squanders the potential of the fun (if unlikely) set-up.

Tags: m, thriller
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